On today’s radioshow I also played a portion of Tim Robbins’ not entirely scheduled keynote speech to the National Association of Broadcasters convention on Monday, in which he excoriated the mainstream media industry saying, ““We are at an abyss as an industry and as a country.”
The keynote was supposed to be a Q&A session with TV critic David Bianculli since Robbins decided not to give the speech he had prepared (and ended up giving). Bianculli had read the speech and compared it to former FCC chairman Newton Minow’s famous 1961 speech to the NAB wherein he called television a “vast wasteland.” Bianculli’s positive review prompted audience members to urge Robbins to give the speech anyway.
Much of the speech was not broadcast ready, due to Robbins’ prodigious command of the f-word. If you’re interested in hearing that part, you can listen to a bootleg recorded by Broadcasting and Cable magazine [MP3].
Bianculli gives his account of the keynote on his blog.
It’s a great speech, and all the more of a hoot because it was delivered from the belly of best (to mix my metaphors). Kudos to Robbins for taking the NAB up on the offer to deliver the keynote and, yes, some respect must be paid the NAB for welcoming Robbins and not yanking him off stage. It hardly makes up for the existence of Bill O’Reilly or Michael Savage, who are, as Edward R Murrow would call–channeled through Tim Robbins–“nazi cocksuckers.”